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The Reformation Monument in Worms St. Mary's Cathedral Erfurt Learn about woad Wartburg Castle Lutherstadt-Wittenberg Motet concert in Headquarters of the Meet Luther's descendents
St. Thomas' Church, Leipzig
Luther Family Association in Zeitz
The Reformation Monument in Worms
St. Mary's Cathedral Erfurt
Learn about woad
Motet concert in
Headquarters of the
Meet Luther's descendents
We invite you to join expert German tour director Uli Buschmann and tour host Don Wolfinger, on a 12 day journey in the footsteps of Martin Luther. Imagine yourself going to the epicenter of the Reformation and walking in the very places once frequented by Martin Luther and his contemporaries. Picture yourself outside the Castle Church in Wittenberg where Luther posted the 95 Theses or viewing the room where he translated the New Testament into German.
On this leisurely-paced tour, we will learn about life in Germany during Luther’s day. We will see the homes where he lived and the churches in which he served. The highlight will be a day meeting some of Luther’s descendants in the delightful town of Zeitz. It’s going to be an amazing trip, and we would love to have you join us to share in this experience!
Please note this itinerary is copyrighted.
Key: IF = In Flight Meals, B= Breakfast, D = Dinner
Day 1: Friday, August 25, 2017: Flights
We will depart the US today on our overnight flights to Frankfurt, Germany. Pre-tour nights are available for early arrivals. We will arrange a afternoon excursion for everyone who arrives early. (IF)
Day 2: Saturday, August 26, 2017: Frankfurt, Worms
On arrival in Frankfurt, we will transfer to our hotel in the delightful village of Hofheim: close to Frankfurt. In the afternoon, we will travel to Worms where Luther was summoned to appear before the emperor. He was asked to recant, and of course he refused. We will walk through the majestic Romanesque cathedral and then go to the site, now in a park, where he stood and gave his final testimony. We’ll have a photo stop at the stunning Reformation Monument. On the way back to our hotel, we will stop at an historic “Strausswirtschaft” inn in this wine-growing area for a traditional meal. (IF/D)
Day 3: Sunday, August 27, 2017: Frankfurt, Erfurt
This morning, we will attend the morning church service (in English) at Trinity Lutheran Church in Frankfurt. Founded in 1956 for Americans living in the area, many of them service personnel, it has become a meeting point for many nations over the years. We will then travel to Erfurt and check-in to our hotel where we will be based for three nights. We will dine in our hotel this evening. (B/D)
Day 4: Monday, August 28, 2017: Erfurt
Erfurt is closely linked to Martin Luther. In his early years, Luther attended the local university which ranks among the three oldest universities in Germany. After he had taken a vow to become a monk, he entered the Augustinian Monastery and lived there for 6 years (1505- 1511). We’ll be guided around the monastery including seeing a replica cell. As we further explore the city, we will visit the unique ensemble of two churches high up on a hill; the Cathedral of Mary (left) and the Severi church. The cathedral is one of the oldest churches in Germany, going right back to the Christianization by St. Boniface starting AD 719. Inside the cathedral, there are some noteworthy relics. The bell, known as the “Gloriosa”, is the biggest free swinging medieval bell in the world and can be visited by phoning the bell steward and booking one of his occasional tours. The massive flight of stairs leading to the entrance has been used as a stage for some years now to present plays and concerts during a summer festival. Erfurt also boasts a unique medieval bridge that has lots of shops on it – the Krämerbrücke (bridge of stores). This is the only one of its kind in northern, continental Europe. The closest rival is the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy. One reason Erfurt is on the map is a lowly plant that grows only in that area which is used to dye fabrics. The scientific name of the plant is Isatis Tinctoria. In German, it is called Waid or Glastum, and the common English name is Woad. This plant ended all those endless shades of grey and brown that clothes would show. Just as Luther brought color into the German language, Woad brought color to fabric. Woad meant immense wealth for Erfurt. The cottage industry started in the late 1600’s, gave work to the people, and brought riches to those in control of the trade. We will visit Frau Sigritt Weiss, one of the few “blue printers” who still makes beautiful tablecloths, etc. (B/D)
Day 5: Tuesday, August 29, 2017: Eisenach, Erfurt
In 1521, while fleeing from the wrath of the Emperor and Pope, a fake kidnapping was staged by his friend and protector, Frederick the Wise, in order that Luther could take refuge in Wartburg Castle. We will tour the castle and stand in the room where Luther lived and worked for almost a year. Among other things, he translated, for the first time, the New Testament into the German language. This medieval castle is breathtakingly placed high on a rock. It holds many treasures and is deeply interwoven with German history through the ages. Back down in the city, we’ll visit St. George’s church. Martin was a choir boy while he went to school in Eisenach and later again on his way to Worms where he did what he did best…preach. Eisenach was also home to Johann Sebastian Bach. He was baptized in St. George’s, and several members of the Bach family were organists here. We will have free time in the afternoon to visit the Bach House before we return to Erfurt. B/D)
Day 6: Wednesday, August 30, 2017: Eisleben, Wittenberg
This morning we will continue to the little city of Eisleben, which is sometimes referred to as the “Bethlehem and the Jerusalem of the reformer”. Our first port of call will be the house where little Martin was born on November 10, 1483. The authentic recreation of a living room around 1500 AD has won awards from the association of German architects. The next day after his birth, Luther was baptised in the nearby church of St. Petri-Pauli, just a few steps up the street from the house. This old, Gothic church has currently been beautifully restored in view of the big Luther celebrations in 2017 to celebrate baptism as a Christian institution. Throughout his life, Martin often returned to Eisleben, finally once again as an old man to settle a dispute within the ruling family of the area. After three weeks, he finally succeeded. One day later, on February 18, 1546, he died. We’ll take a look around the church where he gave his last 4 sermons and where his body was laid out before returning home to Wittenberg. Mid-afternoon, we continue our journey to the city of Wittenberg, thus, more or less precisely, following the reformer’s last journey on this earth. Our home for the next 2 nights will be in a village close to Wittenberg. Dinner is included tonight at our hotel. (B/D)
Day 7: Thursday, August 31, 2017: Wittenberg
Today, we will tour the Luther House Museum where Martin Luther and his family lived. This Reformation museum’s collection includes Luther’s pulpit, and first editions of his books. Nearby is St. Mary’s Church, a twin-towered Gothic church where Luther preached the Reformation, got married (1525), and baptized his six children. We will go to the spot where Luther reputedly burned the Papal Bull, by which Rome condemned him as a heretic. In the Castle Church we will see Luther’s tomb and gather outside the doors where Luther posted his 95 Theses against the sale of indulgences—and launched the Reformation in 1517. We will have a very special Luther-themed meal this evening. (B/D)
Day 8: Friday, September 1, 2017: Torgau, Leipzig
This morning, we will drive to Torgau, the political center of the Reformation. During the 15th and 16th centuries, the town was the residence of the prince-electors of Saxony. We will begin with a tour of St. Mary’s Church, where Luther’s wife, Katharina von Bora, is buried. We will see the house where she died, which is now a museum about her life. The magnificent renaissance Hartenfels Castle includes the first purpose-built Protestant church, which Luther consecrated in 1544. In the afternoon, we will continue on to Leipzig. Luther was here more than once, but Leipzig is really the town of Johann Sebastian Bach. Bach served as cantor in St. Thomas Church for 27 years. We will hear Bach’s music at the Motet concert in the afternoon. Afterwards, dinner will be served at the famous Auerbach’s Keller Restaurant in Leipzig. (B/D)
Day 9: Saturday, September 2, 2017: Leipzig
We will have a leisure day today, but we will begin with an introduction to Leipzig. In the market square we will see the beautiful old city hall. The museum collection includes Katherina von Bora’s wedding ring. In St. Nicholas Church, we will hear the story of the prayer meetings. In 1989, thousands of East Germans gathered by candlelight in this church to form human rights and pro-democracy demonstrations that led to the destruction of the infamous Berlin Wall and the dissolution of East Germany. The rest of the day is free to explore museums, shop, or relax. In the early evening, we will transfer to our hotel in Zeitz, where we will be based for two nights. We will dine in our hotel. (B/D)
Day 10: Sunday, September 3, 2017: Meet the Luthers!
Have you ever wondered if there are any traces left of Martin Luther’s family? Although it’s been 500 years since the start of the Reformation, family members are still in the area. We will spend the day in the town of Zeitz and meet Henriette Rossner, who is a 13th generation descendent of Martin Luther. We will visit the headquarters and library of the Luther Association housed in a magnificent castle. We will also have a private organ concert in the cathedral, meet the mayor in the town hall, and have a very special local meal. (B/D)
Day 11: Monday, September 4, 2017: Alsfeld, Frankfurt
On our journey back to Frankfurt, we will have a leisurely lunchtime break in the fairy tale city of Alsfeld. This charming medieval town is still characterized by a wealth of half-timbered buildings. We will continue our journey to Frankfurt and check-in to our hotel. We will have a farewell meal in a local restaurant this evening. (B/D)
Day 12: Tuesday, September 5, 2017: Return
We will transfer to the Frankfurt Airport for our return flights, or continue our travels in Europe. (B)
Our hotels are chosen for their quality, amenities and proximity to areas of interest. Whenever possible, we choose hotels in town centers, so that you are able to go off and explore in your free time. It may be necessary for us to substitute hotels for others of equal quality. You will be fully informed of any changes that affect you. Enjoy your stay!
Pre-tour nights are available at the Hotel H+ for $100 per person. Please contact us for details
August 26 – 27, 2017
Hotel H+ Frankfurt Airport West
Casteller Strasse 106
August 27-30, 2017
Best Western Hotel Apfelstadt
99192 Apfelstadt bei Erfurt
August 30 – September 1, 2017
Kurhotel Bad Schmiedeberg
06905 Bad Schmiedeberg
September 1-2, 2017
Familie Ronny Wedekind
September 2-4, 2017
September 4-5, 2017
Hotel H+ Frankfurt Airport West
Casteller Strasse 106
We will be happy to assist you with flights. If you would like to make your own arrangements, please arrange to be in Frankfurt on the morning of August 26, 2017. If you would prefer to arrive earlier, we can arrange a pre-tour hotel nights in Frankfurt. Please ensure we have a copy of your flight itinerary for our records as soon as you have booked it.
*Price based on a minimum of 15 participants
• Transportation: via deluxe air-conditioned coaches
• Accommodations (double-occupancy) in superior 3-star and moderate 4-star hotels
• Meals as indicated in the itinerary
• Uli Buschmann as Tour Director throughout the tour
• Local step-on guides for city tours and major attractions
• Admission to all activities indicated in the itinerary
• All transfers, as a group
• Baggage handling (1 piece of baggage per guest)
• Travel insurance during the tour (upgrade available for pre-tour coverage)
• All taxes and tips except as indicated below
• Air transportation (contact us for options)
• Single supplement ($360)
• Meals and beverages not identified in itinerary
• Items of a personal nature, such as passports and visas. Passports must be valid for 6 months beyond return date.
• Gratuities for Uli and our driver
• Deposit of $350 will secure your place on the tour. Please send all payments to Reformation Tours, LLC. P.O Box 854, Belleville, IL 62222.
• Final invoices will be sent in May 2017
• Final payment is due by June 11, 2017
• Reservations will be accepted until July 1, 2017, subject to availability
We now offer all of our travelers FREE travel insurance on group tours, which is valid throughout the tour. This insurance is through RoamRight, a division of Arch Insurance Company. You have the option to upgrade to the Total Travel Protection Plan to receive full coverage. The price depends on the total land and air cost of the tour.
The Travel Protection Plan covers you while you are on tour (not before). It includes medical and evacuation coverage, missed travel connections, trip delay, baggage delays, and lost luggage.
Included Travel Protection Description of Coverage
Upgraded Insurance from $127 (land)
You can upgrade to the Total Travel Protection plan, by adding Trip Cancellation coverage. This is valid from the time of purchase until the tour begins. E-mail us to add the upgraded insurance, or request the upgrade when you sign-up for the tour.
Click for pre-tour cancellation insurance quote (additional cost) Total Travel Protection Description of Coverage
Regardless of reason, cancellations are costly. To offset these costs the following fees will apply, plus any non-recoverable expenses to our suppliers:
From time of deposit to until 100 days before departure: $100
From 99-15 days prior to departure: $350 plus any non refundable deposits
14 days or less prior to departure: No refund– Cancellation charges also apply to additional accommodation reserved prior to and after the tour.
– Cancellations must be received in writing by 5:00 p.m. central time on the last business day of the applicable time period.
– For flight changes or cancellations, revision fees and/or airline cancellation charges will apply.
– Roommates canceling can result in a single supplement charge for the roommate. The Participant who cancels will be responsible for that charge if a substitute roommate cannot be found.
– Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance is strongly recommended.
Reformation Tours cannot assume responsibility for any additional costs or fees relating to the issuance and/or cancellation of air tickets or other arrangements not made through Reformation Tours.
We look forward to welcoming you on the Luther Anniversary Tour. Click on the image to download a copy of the brochure.
You can fill out your reservations online by clicking the “Book Now” tab or click here to download the form.
You can either send a check made payable to “Reformation Tours” to P.O. Box 854, Belleville, IL 62222 or click here to pay by credit card.
Your tour price includes FREE travel insurance throughout the tour through RoamRight, a division of Arch Insurance Company.
Included Insurance – FREE to all our group travelers, the Travel Protection Plan covers you while you are on tour (not before). It includes medical and evacuation coverage, missed travel connections, trip delay, baggage delays, and lost luggage.
Optional Add-on Insurance – The add-on Trip Cancellation Plan is valid from the time of purchase until the tour begins. The cost depends on the total land and air price. CLICK HERE for a quote.
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